15 Delectable Chicken Drumstick Recipes

So Many Dinner Ideas

Buttermilk Fried Chicken

The Spruce

You probably already expect to see chicken drumsticks as part of the fried chicken bucket at a certain fast food joint, but the dark meat drums taste great in a whole range of preparations. Many recipes that call for thigh meat can also use the meat from drumsticks, so consider swapping them out. You can find drumsticks packaged separately at your butcher or meat aisle, and they often come in packages with thighs, as well. Once you try the flavorful, juicy meat, you'll reconsider chicken breasts as your poultry go-to.

  • 01 of 15

    Spicy Fried Chicken Drumsticks

    Crispy Fried Drumsticks

    The Spruce

    These Southern-style chicken drumsticks have more flavor than those you may order at your favorite takeout joint. Buttermilk, Tabasco, and a dash of cayenne pepper come together for a spicy and crispy main dish or appetizer. This recipe also scales up and down easily for a casual meal—no utensils required.

  • 02 of 15

    Baked Buffalo-Style Drumsticks

    Baked Chicken Drumsticks, Buffalo-Style

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    Lighten up classic Buffalo chicken wings with this baked presentation. Roast the chicken drums with olive oil and garlic for a flavorful base, then toss them with signature Buffalo sauce and drizzle with ranch or blue cheese dressing. Serve with carrot and celery sticks and have at it.

  • 03 of 15

    Honey Baked Chicken Drumsticks

    Honey Baked Drumsticks

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    For a slightly sweet, succulent snack or easy main dish, try these easy drumsticks coated with honey, soy sauce, Creole seasonings, and lemon juice. They make a unique twist on chicken wings for the big game or a tasty main protein with a starch and vegetable.

  • 04 of 15

    Sticky Slow Cooker Chicken Drumsticks

    Sticky Crockpot Chicken Drumsticks

    The Spruce

    Don't get intimidated by the long list of ingredients for this sticky slow cooker chicken drumstick. You probably have most of the spices in your cabinet already. It comes out garlicky, slightly spicy, peppery, and a little smoky. The meat gets very tender during the long cooking time and they taste great alongside steamed veggies or a green salad for an easy supper.

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  • 05 of 15

    Slow Cooker Chicken Drumsticks

    Slow Cooker Chicken Drumsticks

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    Coat chicken drumsticks in a Creole-style seasoning for a zesty main dish that takes very little effort. If you don't have any Cajun or Creole seasoning on hand, this recipe also includes instructions for a homemade salt-free blend you can toss together yourself.

  • 06 of 15

    Tex-Mex Chicken Drumsticks

    Chicken Cacciatore
    LauriPatterson / Getty Images

    You're just three ingredients away from this easy and delicious chicken drumstick dinner. Choose a spicier salsa for a more assertive flavor and a more mild salsa if you're serving kids or spice-averse palates. Add some chopped tomatoes to the onions, some green onions, or garnish with some cilantro for a fancier presentation.

  • 07 of 15

    Barbecued Chicken Drumsticks

    Better Barbecue Chicken Sauce
    Debbie Smirnoff/Getty Images

    A finger-licken' sticky barbecue sauce makes these juicy baked chicken drumsticks taste special. Marinate them in the sauce for at least four hours before baking to let the flavors really permeate. This recipe also works on the grill, just watch for flare-ups since the sweet sauce can burn easily.

  • 08 of 15

    Oven-Fried Chicken Drumsticks

    Oven Fried Chicken

    The Spruce

    Season flour with a little curry powder, paprika, salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning, then coat drumsticks with it and bake them up for a flavorful chicken drumstick dinner. They taste great either hot or cold for a picnic, tailgate, or easy supper at home.

    Continue to 9 of 15 below.
  • 09 of 15

    Classic Southern Fried Chicken

    Buttermilk Fried Chicken

    The Spruce

    Marinate chicken drumsticks in buttermilk, paprika, some poultry seasoning, and other spices to give the chicken a tender texture and zesty flavor. Then toss it in flour seasoned with cayenne, paprika, and garlic, and onion powder and fry for a classic Southern fried chicken recipe that will please the whole crowd.

  • 10 of 15

    Thai Coconut Chicken Curry

    Thai Coconut Chicken Curry Recipe

    The Spruce 

    This fragrant chicken curry will fill your home with a wonderful aroma as it cooks. You can cut down the prep time by using lime or lemon juice instead of lemongrass and using a packaged curry paste instead of making your own. But if you have the time, the extra steps and ingredients really yield superior results.

  • 11 of 15

    Parmesan and Panko Chicken Drumsticks

    Parmesan Panko Chicken Drumsticks

    The Spruce / Jennifer Meier

    For quick and easy chicken drumsticks that taste similar to fried, try this simple Parmesan and panko preparation. They come out just as crispy as fried, without all the extra oil. Parmesan cheese adds a little extra umami flavor. Serve them hot or cold, just keep in mind that they will lose a little of that crispy texture once they cool.

  • 12 of 15

    Brined Barbecue Chicken Drumsticks

    grilled bbq chicken legs

    The Spruce

    Brining these chicken drumsticks before tossing them on the grill tenderizes the meat for a texture you can't beat. Basting the sauce onto the chicken drumsticks as they cook lets it slightly caramelize without as much risk of burning as putting the chicken on the grill already sauced.

    Continue to 13 of 15 below.
  • 13 of 15

    Chicken Drumsticks Cacciatore

    Slow Cooker Chicken Drumsticks Cacciatore

    Lauri Patterson-E+-Getty Images


    This "hunter's style" chicken drumstick recipe cooks up into a rich, succulent tomato sauce in your slow cooker for a hands-off Italian meal that tastes like you labored over it. Traditionally served over pasta, it works well with spaghetti or any noodle that will hold that great sauce.

  • 14 of 15

    Baked Parmesan Drumsticks

    Breaded Drumsticks
    Ian O'Leary / Getty Images

    A crispy Parmesan cheese and breadcrumb coating gives simple chicken drumsticks a satisfying crunch – no fryer required! Drying the breaded chicken for about 5 minutes on a cooling rack will help the coating stick to the meat while cooking.

  • 15 of 15

    Garlic Roasted Chicken Drumsticks

    Chicken legs

     Getty Images

    Just five ingredients go into this easy and crowd-pleasing roasted chicken drumstick recipe. You can roast or grill the drumsticks, for a smokier flavor. Basting them as they go will keep the sauce from burning during the cook time.